North Korea’s formal name is the “Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea,” which is plausibly true, so long as Kim Chong Il’s family members get to vote on things:
North Korean leader Kim Jong Il promoted his son and his sister to top military positions in the hours before the country’s largest political conference in 30 years, demonstrating anew his reliance on family bloodlines to protect his reclusive regime.
The elevation of Kim’s son Kim Jong Eun to the rank of general verified his status as the Stalinist dictator’s heir apparent.
But according to experts, it was the tapping of sister Kim Kyong Hui to a similar position that offered a glimpse into Kim Jong Il’s strategy for protecting power as his health declines and his untested son emerges. To put it simply: He plans to rely on his family.
Perhaps now Kim the elder won’t be so ronery.